–Dr Tariq Niazi had refused to obey Punjab law minister’s orders seeking transfer of PML-N leader Hanif Abbasi’s daughter
RAWALPINDI: Punjab Specialised Healthcare & Medical Education Secretary Saqib Zafar on Monday suspended the medical superintendent (MS) of Benazir Bhutto Hospital Rawalpindi for his “negligence and misconduct”.
According to a notification issued here, Dr Tariq Masood Khan Niazi, a government doctor of Grade-20, was replaced by Dr Samina Shaheen.
The suspension comes months after Dr Niazi was embroiled in a controversy over a leaked audio call that revealed Punjab Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Raja Basharat had allegedly threatened him against disobeying orders regarding transferring Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Hanif Abbasi’s daughter.
In the audio, the minister was heard ordering Dr Niazi to transfer Areeba Abbasi to the Skin Department of the hospital. As Dr Tariq Niazi refused to obey, Basharat could be heard threatening him with dismissal from the post of the hospital’s MS.
Dr Niazi had also confirmed to local media that the minister threatened him on phone.
Following the incident, Dr Abbasi had resigned from her post, alleging that the Benazir Bhutto Hospital MS had been victimising her because of her father’s political affiliations.
In the resignation letter she sent to Punjab health secretary, Dr Areeba had said she joined the hospital in 2017 and since then has served as a casualty medical officer and then in the Pathology Department. She was then appointed as a medical officer in the Dermatology Department.
However, Dr Niazi suddenly transferred her to the emergency department. She had said there were no behavioural issues that would have spurred the transfer and she wasn’t even given any explanation for the transfer fiasco.